History of the Oxford Bujinkan

The classical Japanese martial art of Bujinkan Ninjutsu can trace its roots for over a thousand years within Japan and has among its influences Indian, Tibetan and Chinese spiritual as well as martial art traditions. The modern version of these traditions is Soke Dr Massaki Hatsumi’s Bujinkan (Divine Warrior Training Hall), Soke Hatsumi combines 9 different martial art Ryu Ha (Schools) into the Bujinkan system. In the late 70’s this martial art opened its doors to the west, and students from around the world after having studied with Soke Hatsumi in Japan where allowed to setup their own organisations. Brin Morgan and Natasha Tomarkin Morgan where among the first generation of non-Japanese students, and have been training with Soke for over 30 years. The Oxford Bujinkan was setup by Michael Venner in 1998 in direct association with Brin Morgan and Natasha Tomarkin Morgan and their UK Shadow Warrior Organization. Michael Venner passed the Oxford Bujinkan Dojo to Gernot Biersack and Rupert Whitaker in 2006 when Michael moved back to New Zealand. In 2006 the Oxford Bujinkan was jointly run by Sensei Gernot Biersack and Sensei Rupert Whitaker, then in 2015 Rupert handed the school over to Sensei Leigh Gooding. The direct link to Soke Hatsumi is enjoyed and experienced through UK wide weekend seminars when both Brin Morgan and Natasha Tomarkin Morgan teach and share what they have learned in Japan.

The martial arts traditions underpinning Bujinkan Ninjutsu where born out of the need for self protection and survival in a society of rigid rules domination by the samurai warrior class. Although the Bujinkan has spiritual aspects to the training it has no religious tendencies. At the beginning and the end of a session Dojo etiquette requires us to bow in and out while saying ‘Shiken Harimitsu Daikomyo’ (May every encounter be the beginning of enlightenment). Bujinkan Ninjutsu is very much an martial art of pacifying the opponent through appropriate means. In training great emphasis is placed on learning how to go to the ground without harming one self. Rolling and break falling are regular activity in every class. Another important component of the art is how to avoid the attack, fitting in with the opponent so as to make a whole by complimenting his actions as expressed in the Tao symbols of ying and yang. We also learn how to use the aggressors strength against him by manipulating his balance, timing and distance. The outcome of all this is that we learn true patience and self control trying to better ourselves and our environment through self defence of the mind, body and heart. Bringing light to a dark world through perseverance.

Hatsumi Sensei Biography

Takamatsu Sensei Biography